Located at the southern end of North America, Mexico is one of the most important economic partners to the United States and Canada. Mexico’s rich history and its ever growing economy has turned the country into an appealing destination for digital nomads. The country’s strong university system also makes Mexico one of the best places to recruit developers, marketers, and other knowledge workers.
In Mexico, the hiring and recruiting process is centered on building relationships. New job seekers might want to set up an in-person meeting with their potential employer, since face-to-face interactions are important in Mexican culture.
For both employees and employers, remaining persistent through the hiring process is crucial for gauging how serious both parties are in working together.
In Mexico, recruitment is largely done through word-of-mouth referrals, social media advertising on platforms like Facebook, and job boards. Most of the well known recruitment agencies in the United States aren’t popular in Mexico, so foreigners looking for jobs in Mexico should focus on building their professional networks and growing their contacts in a global market.
Speaking multiple languages is highly valued as well. International employees are usually expected to speak Spanish and English, which is the most used language in the business world. Fluency in languages such as French, Portuguese, and German can also help potential applicants stand out.
When searching for a new job in Mexico in technology, marketing, or business, you will want to look for companies that have a global presence. These companies tend to offer benefits and compensation packages that go above and beyond what is typically offered in the country. Some of these benefits include private health insurance, stock options, startup equity, unlimited PTO, work-from-home office stipends, and mental health resources.
Before you begin the interview process, you want to make sure that the company you’re applying to work for is compliant with Mexican employee regulations. If they do not have an entity set-up in the country, they will not be able to add you to payroll and your application to work in Mexico on a permanent resident visa will most likely be denied.
If you do not have technology or business skills but want to live and work in Mexico, consider teaching English as a second language. Many companies look to hire globally. Requirements for teaching iEnglish internationally vary depending on the type of institution (public vs. private) and the level of instruction (grade school vs. secondary school vs. university). At minimum, you will need a university degree. You might also need a specialization in education or previous experience in the classroom.
Mexican workers have a long history of campaigning for better working conditions and more protections. Today, labor unions have a strong influence throughout the country which can make hiring employees challenging. This means that employment contracts between employees and employers can be rather complex with a clear salary stated in the contract. In order to maintain compliance, potential employees and employers should draw up a labor contract early on in the hiring process in order to protect both parties.
When hiring employees in Mexico, consult local labor lawyers and HR specialists with in-country knowledge. If labor contracts are found to be non-compliant, businesses risk heavy fines and legal action. You need to clearly state the employee’s starting salary in their labor contract.
The following should be included in Mexican labor contracts:
Name and nationality
Services provided by employee
Place(s) where work is provided
Vacation and benefits
In Mexico, companies can offer 3 different types of employment contracts: Contracto por tiempo indeterminado, contrato por tiempo determinado, and honorarios.
Contracto por tiempo indeterminado, which has no clear or specific termination date, is the most popular type of employment contract in Mexico. This employment contract should include information such as salary, benefits, services provided by the employee, and the employee’s start date.
Like the contrato por tiempo indeterminado, the contrato por tiempo determinado should outline key information such as salary, benefits, and services provided by the employee. However, this contract has a specific start and end date, which must be explicitly stated in the contract.
Mexican companies can also hire independent contractors, known as honorarios. Honorarios do not usually receive benefits such as private healthcare or stock options, since they are contracted to work on a specific project or offer a specific service.
Contractors take your business as a client, which means they likely work for multiple clients and have multiple sources of income. The government does not regulate contractors in the same way that they regulate full-time employees, which means they can work as many hours as necessary to complete a project. They usually demand a higher hourly pay.
When hiring contractors, you need to make sure that you are carefully following tax laws to protect both your business and the contractor. To avoid tax penalties, companies must be sure to distinguish when someone is working as an independent contractor vs. performing the duties that would be expected of a full-time employee.
Independent contractors usually fit these parameters:
Are they working in more than one specialized job area?
Are they providing a specialized service that a full-time employee can’t?
Do they have their own ability to hire help?
Do they have additional income(s)?
Most importantly, when hiring independent contractors for your business, make sure that you draft a formal and legal contract to establish the parameters of their work.
The following are permissible contracts under Mexican Federal Law:
Contracts for a set period of time
Contracts for an indeterminable time
Seasonal work contracts
Trial period contracts
Always keep receipts when paying independent contractors. You might need this at the end of the year to file taxes.
It’s possible for Mexican citizens to intern in foreign countries, and for foreigners to intern in Mexico. This sets forth a global presence for both the citizen and the company. However, the laws around work visas make it easier if the intern works remotely, on a contract basis. Interns do not usually qualify for work visas or permits.
Many companies want to build and recruit their own teams in global Mexico, but are not sure how to go about establishing an entity and remaining compliant. If you’re a company looking to pay employees in Mexico, you will need to set up a foreign entity in order to put your employees on payroll.
Many companies based in Mexico want to hire talent globally, but aren’t exactly sure how to go about onboarding and paying employees across borders compliantly. Maybe you want to hire a software engineer based in Colombia, or a designer living in Canada.
With Via, we help you hire, onboard, and pay remote employees across the world. As your employer-of-record abroad, we take care of the local HR logistics, such as payroll, benefits, and taxes while also making sure you have a global presence. Maintaining compliance is our responsibility. You simply focus on building your team and running your business